MDI Support Bills Would Advance Inclusion in Underserved Communities

CUNA supported two bills supporting Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) Wednesday, both part of a group of bills being marked up this week by the House Financial Services Committee. CUNA supports the Expanding Opportunities for Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) Act (H.R. 5315) and the Ensuring Diversity in Community Banking Act of 2019 (H.R. 5322).

“Minority depository institution (MDI) credit unions represent an important way in which credit unions are fulfilling their mission by advancing financial inclusion and well-being for minority and underserved communities,” the letter reads. “Today, MDI credit unions represent approximately 10% of all credit unions and serve approximately 3.9 million members (representing 3% of all credit union members).”

Specifically:

  • H.R. 5315 would codify the Treasury Department’s mentor protégé program to encourage collaboration between Minority Depository Institutions and large financial institutions. This program represents a valuable resource for MDI credit unions because it offers an opportunity to bolster their sustainability. The bill passed with a 57-0 vote; and
  • H.R. 5322 would encourage federal government deposits in MDIs, establish a Small Business Administration task force focused on MDIs and CDFIs, and require diversity and inclusion reports from each prudential regulator. Minority Depository Institution credit unions represent an important way in which credit unions are fulfilling their mission by advancing financial inclusion and well-being for minority and underserved communities. The bill passed with a 52-0 vote.

CUNA also expressed concerns with a section in the Protecting Your Credit Score Act of 2019 (H.R. 5332). Introduced by Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-5), the measure would require credit reporting agencies create an online portal for consumers to access free credit report, and credit scores as well as dispute errors.

It would also direct the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to impose and enforce data security safeguards for the credit reporting agencies.

CUNA appreciates these efforts, but is concerned that Section 5, which provides for injunctive relief and attorney’s fees, may encourage frivolous litigation against furnishers, driving up the cost of financial services.

CUNA has engaged with the bill’s sponsor and looks to continue that engagement with the committee on the issue. The bill passed the markup 31-24.